Chat with Beano Cook
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, ESPN's Beano Cook makes his weekly stop in SportsNation to chat about the college football season.
Carroll H. "Beano" Cook, who joined ESPN in March 1986, serves as a college football studio commentator. He also offers college football commentary on ESPN Radio.
Send your questions now and join Cook Wednesday at 3 p.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (3:02 PM)
We've got Beano!
Beano Cook (3:02 PM)
Good afternoon. I'm sorry about my pick last week. I'm now 3-4 for the year. I will have a pick for you at the end of this chat.
What do you think of Paterno's suggestion to eliminate helmet to helmet hits: remove the facemasks?
Beano Cook (3:03 PM)
That might make a difference. I'm for leather helmets, but Joe Paterno has a better idea. You eliminate the facemask and the helmet to helmet hits might go. I don't think the facemask will be eliminated. But something has to be done.
Ok, last weekend didn't turn out as we hoped. Moving on...can the Huskers beat Okie State? I'm a bit worried now. Thanks.
Beano Cook (3:04 PM)
Well, the game's on the road. It's not going to be easy. Nebraska waited all year long to play Texas after losing that championship game by 1 second. OK State won't be easy. That's all I can say.
What is it goint to take for Rick Stanzi to get some Heisman love? Go Heismanzi!
Beano Cook (3:05 PM)
At this stage, I think it's unrealistic to think he has a shot at the Heisman. But remember this, it's only October. That doesn't mean he can't become a strong contender. Iowa has three tough games, all at home, if he plays well in those games, he has a shot.
Do you think the Championship game should be between the 2 best teams or teams with more difficult schedules with 1 or 2 losses?
Beano Cook (3:06 PM)
Put it this way, I think the championship game should be between the two teams that finish first and second in the BCS. I think Alabama, with one loss, is better than Boise State or TCU, but if Boise State or TCU is either first or second, that team should go.
BC - if you could pick one coach to win one game whom would you choose?
Beano Cook (3:07 PM)
Nick Saban. Nick Saban, Kirk Ferentz, Urban Meyer. Any of those three.
Larry Bavly (Brookline, MA)
If the Big 10 becomes 12 schools and the Big 12 becomes 10 schools, should they exchange their conference names?
Beano Cook (3:07 PM)
Well, they should, but they won't. It will be funny to call the Big 10, with 12 teams, the Big 10. I agree with you.
What has Alabama done this year to make them still the top contender? I have yet to see a great win out of their team. they are playing very mediocre
Beano Cook (3:09 PM)
No. 1 is they won at Arkansas. Arkansas waited nine months for that game. They lost to South Carolina. You might be right, but if they beat Auburn and LSU, that would be impressive. If you had a tournament right now, I still think Las Vegas would make Alabama the favorite. That's what I think, but it doesn't mean I'm right.
What is going on at Miami (FL)? Can randy shannon survive if they lose 4 games and no ACC title?
Beano Cook (3:12 PM)
I don't think he's in trouble. I don't. But in today's world, you just don't know. Fans are impatient. You have the talk shows. The Internet. The media coverage is unbelievable. But I think he will last, unless the team completely collapses. They looked terrible against FSU.
Roger (Mansfield, MN)
How good of a coach can Minnesota get now that Brewster is out? Does the ADs comments hurt their chances of landing a top shelf coach?
Beano Cook (3:13 PM)
I'm not quite sure what the AD said, but it's going to be very tough to get an established coach. What you have to do is look at some school at the lower division and pick a coach there that's won. It's not easy to win at Minnesota. The state doesn't produce many great players. Hockey is a different story. They're going to be in that division with Michigan and Michigan State and Nebraska. It won't be easy.
JD (New Orleans)
Beano, Forde is on the Boise bus to heaven and Schlabach/MarkMay are on the Boise elevator (going wayyyyyy down). Which vehicle do you choose?
Beano Cook (3:15 PM)
If you have to say what they're going to do this season, some people are talking about Nevada, who lost to Hawaii last week. But it will be a big game for Nevada. I don't know whether Boise State deserves to play for the title or not, but all I'm saying is if the computer says they should play for the title, they should. But if Auburn stays undefeated and untied, they will jump Boise. Boise needs teams to lose.
Ray (The Plains)
They say defense wins championships. Does defense give LSU a victory this weekend or does Auburn's offense take them to 8-0?
Beano Cook (3:16 PM)
I think homefield makes the difference. If they played at LSU, LSU would win. I think Auburn is going to win. That doesn't mean I'm right and don't mortgage your home on my prediction. I don't want to see a foreclosure where you live. LSU has a tough road. The Western division in the SEC is tougher than any division in the NFL.
Does Navy have a shot this weekend versus ND? Go midshipmen!
Beano Cook (3:17 PM)
Navy has won two of the last three games. I would say yes. Notre Dame has better material and should win. But Navy plays hard against Notre Dame. Navy could win this game, which would be amazing, winning 3 of the last 4 games. It happened before, but that was a long time ago.
Hi, BC. When does Papa Joe get it that he needs to retire? Look at FSU with Bobby B.
Beano Cook (3:19 PM)
I think that if Paterno wins his 400th game, I think PSU will have a new coach in 2011. I have never said this before. I've never predicted that he would retire the next year or the next decade. But if PSU is only able to win two more games, he will retire after the next year. These are just predictions. I have no inside information. I just hope we don't have a repeat of what happened to Bobby Bowden.
Paul (Justice, OK)
What do you make of Virginia Tech this year? Losing to James Madison only to turn things around and start kicking you know what. They seem to be back on track.
Beano Cook (3:20 PM)
I think Virginia Tech has a chance to play for the ACC title. But the hopes were high but they evaporated in the last 30 seconds against Boise State.
Will the Zooker be around to coach another year at Illinois?
Beano Cook (3:20 PM)
Let's see what happens the remainder of the season. I think his job is shaky, but a few wins might save him. It's always been a mystery to me why Illinois doesn't win more games.
Tony (West Virginia)
Who wins the Big East this year?
Beano Cook (3:21 PM)
Right now, I would say West Virginia is the favorite as of right now. That's why they're going to play the games in October, November and December. We'll find out.
Nick (Gainesville, FL)
Make the replay and referee communications instantly available for the TV audience. SDSU and Arkansas have my back. Your thoughts?
Beano Cook (3:22 PM)
What is said there is just like confession, it remains there.
Regan (Eugene, OR)
Only 2 years into Chip Kelly tenure, who has meant for to Oregon Football. Kelly or Bellotti?
Beano Cook (3:23 PM)
Bellotti got Oregon going and had the smarts to hire Kelly. Kelly is from the east coast. Who would ever think that somebody from New England would end up as head coach at Oregon. It's not impossible, but it's unusual. Winning at Oregon is not easy. Remember that. It's not like winning at USC, Ohio State or Notre Dame. Oregon seems to be hot.
Lance (Destin, FL)
What do you think of Florida State so far? Jimbo Fisher seems to be doing an amazing job along with Mark Stoops and that surprising defense. What say you?
Beano Cook (3:27 PM)
Yeah, outside of the fiasco at Oklahoma, FSU is playing well and it looks like FSU will play in the championship game. I know FSU fans are looking forward to the Florida game, which will be in Tallahassee.
All this talk about the polls and who should be number one and number two . . What do u think Kellen Moores chances are at maybe grabbing the Heisman if Boise continues to stay undefeated
Beano Cook (3:27 PM)
Unlikely, even if Boise is undefeated. I think right now the leading contender is definitely Cam Newton of Auburn.
When the NCAA finishes it's investigation at UNC, which program will be in worse shape, UNC or USC?
Beano Cook (3:29 PM)
USC has real problems. I think the penalty of loss of scholarships was just too high. I think the NCAA did that for show. For UNC, I don't know how serious the chargers are. But Butch Davis seems to attract the NCAA attention no matter where he is.
Beano, you've been dissing MIZZOU for years...last week we went done and kicked butt in Aggie land...any thoughts on this weekend... try not to be too predictable
Beano Cook (3:30 PM)
No. 1, what I said about Missouri is that I don't understand why through the years they haven't won more games. I like Missouri. Just because I'm sometimes critical of a team doesn't mean I don't like them. I'm just stating what I think. I've been wrong many times. But two teams that should have won more games over the years and haven't are Illinois and Missouri. This is a good team for them. They could win some games.
Soup or salad? Why does Colin always ask you that?
Beano Cook (3:32 PM)
One time a couple of years ago, he asked me what I was having for lunch and I said salad. So he keeps asking me. It becomes a routine question from Colin, who, by the way, is very funny. Too many of the people in this business take themselves too seriuosly. I might be an idiot, but I don't take myself too seriously.
You got today Yanks or Rangers??
Beano Cook (3:34 PM)
I'm rooting for the Rangers because that means the series is over. I would root against the Yankees except against the Taliban and even then it would be a tough decision. I get sick and tired of the Yankee fans thinking that they don't have an advantage over the other teams. They dominate for one reason: cable money.
Zach (San Diego, CA)
Who wins this Saturday, Iowa or Wisconsin?
Beano Cook (3:35 PM)
Well, home team. In big games, I take the home team. I don't know whether Iowa will cover or not, but I take them. I like the coach. He knows how to win big games. Iowa has beaten Penn State in 8 of the last 9 games.
doug magill (dothan (al))
Beano, what about brian kelly? Is he doing what needs to be done at notre dame? The play of the irish still bothers me...it's sloppy and again i don't think they are playing at the level these gifted guys should be at. What say you sir??
Beano Cook (3:36 PM)
No. 1, Notre Dame has material. I thought Charlie Weis would win and I think Brian Kelly will win. It's not a tough job to win at Notre Dame. It's a lot tougher to win at Iowa. Notre Dame has its own radio network and TV network. And don't talk to me about academics. Notre Dame gets kids in.
Do you think that any other team in the country could have made it through Alabama schedule undefeated? 6 teams coming off byes thats ridiculous. No chance Boise makes it through that.
Beano Cook (3:37 PM)
I agree. Why would the SEC do that? That's what I don't understand. I don't think they'll do it again. I think it's unreal.
Adam (Shreveport, La)
Beano! My Gators. What's up, brother? Just bad performance in the redzone or bad performance over all?
Beano Cook (3:38 PM)
They're good. It's just one of those years. You have to live with it. You've had a pretty good run over the last 4 years, two national titles in basketball and football. Don't be greedy. Just like Congree.
Beano, love the one term and done idea for Congress...nice blog. You like it?
Beano Cook (3:40 PM)
I love it. I'm not a very good writer. The one reason that I could never commit suicide is that I could not write a good farewell note. But I like doing it. I struggle with my writing and I have a good editor. I'm not going to write on politics. My blog in November will be on the holidays. That will come on Nov. 16. I have about 5 written and I have to pick one.
Who is more hated: Ohio State Football or the Yankees?
Beano Cook (3:41 PM)
Oh, the Yankees. Ohio State football is hated in one section of the country. The Yankees are hated on Mars.
Beano, Once we finish off the season 13-0, How do I make sure my Tigers don't get left out of the national champ. game like we did in 04.
Beano Cook (3:43 PM)
If Auburn is 13-0, I will be shocked if they're not playing for the national title. It will be an injustice. I don't think it was in 2004, but it will be this year. Beat Alabama, LSU, Clemson, Arkansas, plus whatever team wins the other division? Come on.
Would you ever have thought you would see an SEC East champ with 3 or more losses?
Beano Cook (3:44 PM)
Yeah, that is tough to believe. Somebody has to win that division. South Carolina would have been in a great position to do it if they had beaten Kentucky. That keeps Georgia and Florida in the race.
Everyone talks about Boise playing a "cupcake" schedule. But, if they win out, they will have have run through that schedule three straight years, and, give or take a game here and there, looked awfully good doing it. Not sure that any other teams in the country wouldn't have laid an egg or slipped up once or twice. Agree?
Beano Cook (3:46 PM)
I can't necessarily agree with that. But what I've said all along is that if Boise State finishes first or second, Boise State deserves to play for the title. You can't argue that they play a soft schedule. But they'll have to play on the road. They'll have to call up a Notre Dame or Ohio State and go and play. I'm not anti-Boise State. If the computer ranks them 1 or 2, they should play for the title.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Do you think that the NCAA should follow the NFL Footsteps & Suspend Players who Flagrantly Helmet to Helmet Hits Which causes Concussions
Beano Cook (3:47 PM)
The NCAA doesn't have the power to do it. And I don't think the schools would give the power to a conference commissioner, especially if it's the SEC. But it's a good observation. In a lot of ways it makes sense. What I notice about football today at the pro and college level, players want to hurt other players. Not just tackle them, but hurt them. That's how violent the game has gotten.
Thanks for answering my question Beano. I really enjoy your commentary and always look forward to hearing you on Cowherd. Even if you are not sold all-in on the Broncos. Who do you think is better today among the non-AQ's: Boise, TCU or Utah?
Beano Cook (3:49 PM)
I think Boise. That's a safe pick, because Utah plays TCU. I certainly hope GameDay goes there, but I don't know what other games are that day. Boise is pretty good. I think they would win the ACC. I think they would win the Big East. I think they would win the NFC North.
Beano Cook (3:49 PM)
Or the AFC West.
Beano, I'm waiting man! Undefeated team in each of 4 major conferences. OK, Auburn, Oregon, Michigan State. Who goes to champ. game and why.
Beano Cook (3:51 PM)
Well, let me point this out, the last time the top four teams in the final regular season poll finished with undefeated records was 1949. I don't think all four teams will be undefeated. If all four are, I think it should be Auburn for sure and you could make a case for any of the other three teams, but I would lean toward Michigan State.
Beano Cook (3:51 PM)
If Auburn is 13-0, they should definitely play for the national title.
LSU or Auburn?
Beano Cook (3:51 PM)
Home team, Auburn.
Beano Cook (3:52 PM)
I don't know why the LSU fans are so impatient with coach Miles. Although I realize the loss to Mississippi last year upsets all LSU fans.
Just based on watching them both this season (i.e. ignoring last year's Heisman), is Trent Richardson a better back than Mark Ingram? I feel like he is, and when I say this, folks laugh.
Beano Cook (3:53 PM)
I would be kidding you if I knew. I don't have an opinion on that. I don't think I'm qualified to say who's better because I haven't seen a lot of them. I will say this that if Mark Ingram goes to the pros, Alabama's opponents next year better think twice if they think they're getting a back that isn't that great.
Who has better helmets, FSU or Miami?
Beano Cook (3:55 PM)
I don't know who has the better cheerleaders. I kind of like Miami's helmets. I'm trying to think about the helmets that I like the best, come to think of it. I like the Navy helmets. I like the Army helmets for some reason. I hate the helmets with all of the stars on it. It looks like some sign on the turnpike.
Beano, teams are being awarded for where they are ranked in a preseason poll. Boise shouldn't be rewarded this year for how they played last year. No one should be ranked until a month of the season has been played.
Beano Cook (3:56 PM)
You might be right, but that's unrealistic. It's not going to change, because all of the magazines rank the teams before the season starts. But what you say might be right. Many times a team gets ranked in a preseason poll off of a bowl win. People like rankings.
WHO DO YOU HAVE FOR THE WIN? Mizzou or OU
Beano Cook (3:57 PM)
Oklahoma. I'm rooting for Missouri. I hope they do well. But they still have to play Nebraska.
Is Les Miles crazy, lucky, or a genius?
Beano Cook (3:58 PM)
A combination of all three. He's a pretty good coach. That Mississippi debacle last year has really hurt his image. But image is not the true test. The guy wins. I think, maybe not this year, but for the last two years, he has missed Bo Pelini.
Beano Cook (3:59 PM)
My prediction. I'm 3-4. I don't have any confidence. Tennessee will make it close against Alabama. Alabama 30, Tennessee 20. I will see you next week. Same time.